HURT BY LOVE?
I have always had a tender, sensitive heart. From the earliest age I loved fully and easily. I loved everyone, much to my parent’s consternation. A tenderhearted, sensitive, loving boychild was sure to be hurt.
They were right.
So I decided sometime in my mid-twenties that I was going to pull back. That I was going to toughen up. That I was not going to traverse the earth as this sensitive, open, loving easy target. I had been hurt enough times by then. I knew it was time to put on the armor. To replace sensitivity with a bit of sarcasm. Tenderness with toughness. Love with aloofness. The hurt had to stop. I would make it stop. I would keep you at bay. If aloof meant alone than so be it.
What I didn’t count on was that toughening up was even more painful than tender and open.
It seems sometimes like it has taken longer to disarm than it did to armor up. I have faced and refaced a lifetime of hurts. A seeming million rejections. An ocean of abandonment. I have reheard every voice that told me I was not enough. That I was a mistake to be rectified. An abomination to be abolished. That I was doomed to be dropped repeatedly.
The closure that I thought would keep me from this litany of lovelessness actually locked me in it.
You see, I was not born to live defended. I am not meant to hide. For me and my sensitive heart closure is suffering. I must consistently be less than I am meant to be. Love less than I am meant to love. Show up with armor when my nature is to show up as an embrace.
And so I have reclaimed my tender, open heart. I have unleashed the love that seeks a free and flowing expression. The pain of closure is far greater than the pain that sometimes accompanies a tender, giving nature.
So, I choose to love. Sure, I know that I may well be hurt. Being what I authentically am is so worth the risk. A sometimes-hurting heart tells me that I am open. It tells me that my sensitivity is engaged. Hurting shows me that tenderness has triumphed over toughness. It tells me that I am human. That I am plugged into my shared humanity and my common Divinity.
Ultimately, God cannot be known by a closed heart. Mysticism requires openness and defenseless. God-Love needs entrance through a willing open heart.
And finally that is what I have.